Kirsten Ballard is many things: a senior at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Miss UNC for the 2013-1014 school year, fellow writer for Her Campus, a UNC Dance Marathon Coach, a member of the UNC marching band, and she is my sister in Kappa Kappa Gamma. She encompasses what it means to “be a Tarheel”. Kirsten’s bubbly personality and ever present smile lights up a room. She can make friends with anyone and somehow manages to do everything for everyone! I am so lucky to know her and to have interviewed her this past week.
Her Campus: You are a huge advocate for UNC Dance Marathon, what got you so involved?
Kirsten Ballard: I became involved in Dance Marathon during Committee Recruitment Week my freshman year–honestly because someone offered me a free tshirt. But since then it has been a love affair. I love the cause, the people and the physical marathon. It’s also the easiest way to claim I’ve done four marathons without running a step.
HC: We all know you are Miss UNC for the 2013-2014 school year, what did that experience mean to you?
KB: Being Miss UNC was about leaving a footprint. I wasn’t sure what I wanted my Carolina experience to mean, but I knew I wanted some sort of legacy. Camp Kesem is such an important, personal cause to me, and I’m more than thrilled to be representing and helping them.
HC: It’s your Senior year, what will you miss most about Chapel Hill?
KB: Gah–don’t remind me. I will miss the electric guitar Hark the Sound before football games the most. After 4 years of marching band and a love for sports, that is the sound and feeling that I will miss the most.
HC: Who is your biggest inspiration?
KB: I have a lot of heroes. Julie Andrews is currently my laptop background. But my mom is my main inspiration, and my biggest cheerleader. My mom is the person I go to for tough love, a hug, advice, money, food, laundry help, or just because.
HC: What has been a huge part of your life as a student here?
KB: Probably my extracurriculars–I try to do everything I can, because otherwise I would just watch Netflix all the time. But overall, marching band definitely takes the cake. I’ve met so many people, gone so many places, and seen so many iconic Carolina moments.
HC: If you could go anywhere in the world, where would it be?
KB: I would go on an African safari. I love rhinos and would love to see them in person.
HC: Everyone has a guilty pleasure! What’s yours?
KB: Diet Coke, crime shows, and romance novels.
HC: What legacy do you hope to leave behind at Carolina?
KB: I want to raise at least $5,000 for Camp Kesem in a Miss UNC capacity. But I think what I want most, what anybody wants, is to be remembered and to have made a difference in one person’s life. Ideally, some day I’ll do something big enough to be in the “I am a Tar Heel” video during basketball, but if not, I want one person to have been influenced by my actions enough to make their life better.